On the Ridge Trail at Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve near La Honda, face east and you can see from Mount Hamilton to Mount Diablo. Face west and the most prominent feature amid thousands of acres of grasslands and woodlands is a curious-looking hump called Mindego Hill. The half-bald summit looks like an inviting destination for a hike, but it has been off-limits until now. In October 2007, thanks to 1,300 citizens who contributed a total of $7.2 million, the Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) purchased the 1,047-acre ranch from the True family, which had bought the land in 1954. In July 2008, POST transferred the land to the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District (MROSD), enlarging Russian Ridge Open Space by more than 50 percent.
It will take time to get Mindego Ranch ready for public access, but this fall MROSD is offering docent-led hikes there. Reserve a spot at www.openspace.org or by calling (650)691-2150, ext. 2.